The most reliable used cars under 100,000 CZK

When it was said earlier that we only had a hundred thousand crowns for a car, you could always choose something decent. Today, however, the offer has become considerably thinner and it is not possible to point to a few cars that would be a definite choice with absolute certainty. And not at all, if they are to be a little bigger and fulfill the role of a family car for several people, and not just an urban zoomer for one.

Of course, if you enter CZK 100,000 as the price limit in used car classifieds search engines, thousands of options will always jump out at you. But many of them are completely unacceptable due to their condition, raid, age, risk or parameters. Let’s take a look at at least five cars that can still be bought for a hundred thousand and can do a lot of work and do an honest job. And you can even buy a decent diesel in this budget if you simply absolutely need or want diesel.

Škoda Fabia II 1.4 16V

Photo: Dalibor Žák

The first choice of “cars under 100,000 CZK” should be the second generation Škoda Fabia. There are plenty of them on the market, service centers know how to deal with it, parts cost a few crowns, you can get everything for it and you will always sell it well if it is in decent condition.

The range of nice pieces is slowly thinning out, but you can still find a decent Fabia with good potential for years to come. The station wagon version can then fulfill the role of a full-fledged family car with low operating costs, but you can also fit in a short one. It is more spacious than you might think. You practically cannot get a nice Octavia II for 100,000 crowns. You’ll probably have better luck with Fabia.

Versions with a 1.4 16V engine can be found in this price range with mileages of 100 to 150,000 km, which is nothing significant for a Fabia. Expect only preventive service (in addition to operating fluids, it will probably also require new belt distributions). The engine as such is very reliable and practically trouble-free. It is probably the least risky unit that appeared in Fabia II.

Watch out for corrosion (front door sills, fifth door) and known issues (faulty rear wiring harness, leaking into the car at the back, automatic A/C failure, front shock absorber upper mounting creaking), but if the car you’re buying is in overall decent condition, it should still last a long time. Look for pieces that are well-preserved at first glance, with a nice interior, especially with proper documentation and ideally a maintained service history. Don’t worry too much about the kilometres, Fabies can handle over 300,000 km with a finger in their nose.

Ford Focus 1.6 16V

Photo: Dalibor Žák

The Ford Focus used to be the automatic choice of those who like to drive, but their budget (or sense) doesn’t allow for a more prestigious car.

The Ford Focus with a 1.6 liter petrol engine was always the clear choice for “cars for a hundred thousand”, whatever generation it was. With the corrosion of the first generation, everyone has had their share, the second generation, sold since 2005, is much better, although after 18 years on the road you can’t expect miracles from the oldest and most used pieces either. The younger and less worn out you can find, the better.

In the budget of up to 100,000 CZK, however, you can also find facelifted units with a sixteen-cylinder engine that have not had murderous raids behind them (they will most often have traveled between 150 and 200 thousand km). If the Focus has up to 150 or even less than 100,000 km, it will probably cost over 100,000. Sometimes a Focus with a 1.8 16V engine also appears, which we also cannot ban. A two-liter petrol is a rarity, with a diesel 1.6 TDCI there will be more problems.

The best version is the “weaker” version of the 1.6 16V engine with a power of 74 kW, which is practically trouble-free (it only occasionally needs to solve problems with ignition coils or cables). The more powerful version can get angry with variable valve timing, which mainly affects pieces with neglected oil service. An indicator of the care of the service is whether he changed the difficult-to-access cabin filter (the gas pedal must be removed). The timing belt should be changed every 8 years or 160,000 km (the 18-stroke engine has a chain), valve clearances usually do not need to be addressed at all until two hundred thousand. The biggest pain point of these otherwise decent used Fords is various problems with electronics, but often only messy service or amateur intervention is to blame.

Toyota Avensis 1.8

Photo: Dalibor Žák

The Avensis is starting to age and the condition of some parts is already showing the ravages of time. However, if you keep the body in good condition and don’t let the car rot, it will last as long as there is gasoline in the world.

The second generation Toyota Avensis could still be a good choice. You can still find quite well-preserved cars without corrosion, which could have a few more years of absolutely reliable service ahead of them. A gasoline 18-liter is always a certainty, sometimes you can also come across a two-liter or a version with a 2.4-liter engine. We would probably prefer to avoid diesel at this age. We only accept completely transparent pieces with a service history that the service specialist approves for you after a thorough inspection and diagnosis.

An Avensis with a 1.8 16V engine can easily only have around 150,000 km, in this price range a well-preserved Corolla Verso occasionally appears, which can also fulfill the role of a full-fledged and, above all, reliable family transporter. Drives over 200,000 km are more frequent, but they mean nothing for this car.

The 1ZZ-FE engine is basically reliable, the timing chain is still fine up to 300,000 km, and if you change the oil on time, nothing serious should happen to it. Only neglected and cold-worn engines take oil. As a rule, there is no need to touch the valve clearance at all. The only known problems are a faulty clutch cylinder (rubbing, whistling and uneven engagement of the clutch pedal), brake rubbing due to incorrect assembly and air conditioning failures when the relay for the compressor clutch goes out. This is truly an extremely reliable car.

Peugeot 308 1.6 HDI

Photo: Peugeot

If you absolutely must have a diesel, some French models are a good choice. They can handle high raids and, above all, they do not rust. It’s just that it probably won’t be entirely without investment and, above all, without compromises in terms of driving characteristics and dynamics.

French cars are always cheaper, or you can get a younger and less used car with better equipment for the same money. The biggest attraction, however, is the very good anti-corrosion protection of these cars. Just walk around the bazaars and you’ll see that even a twenty-year-old Peugeot doesn’t have a single pimple of incipient corrosion on it. Although one can have reservations about the driving performance and dynamics of some models, if you are mainly concerned with space and comfort, the Peugeot 308 of the previous generation can be accepted.

If you absolutely must have a diesel in this price range, this model probably makes the most sense. You won’t get a decent two-liter for a hundred thousand, but the 1.6 HDI engine can work well. Ask for the Euro 5 version, which already has an eight-valve head and does not suffer from the massive carbonation of the sixteen-valve predecessor. All that is needed is to have the oil pan with the recessed screw replaced with a modified part from which all the old oil can be drained. It will make servicing easier and help the car. If the car you’re buying already has it, that’s a big bonus: the previous owner knew what he was doing and wanted the car to last.

You probably won’t get this car without a particulate filter (only some Euro 4 versions, which may have problems with carbonation and leaking injectors). A clogged particle filter is usually the only reason why people get rid of this car. It is enough to solve it (in the context of used diesels, this is still an acceptable expense), replace the distribution and you can drive another 200,000 km with a consumption of around 5 liters per 100 km.

Renault Mégane III 1.5 dCi

Photo: Dalibor Žák

The third generation of Renault Mégane corrects the ailments of its predecessor and adds quite reliable electronics in addition to excellent anti-corrosion protection. But watch out for wreckers and dubious imports, with which you do not have a very peaceful future.

Even the third generation Renault Mégane is not a bad car. In the range of up to CZK 100,000, you can get one with a petrol sixteen-cylinder (it doesn’t go very well and watch out for variable valve timing), but it’s enough for moving between villages and for short trips to the city. You can also buy a version with a pretty good 1.5 dCi diesel. Among similar engines, this one is actually very good.

It has already gotten rid of the earlier problems, and if you change the oil on time and save it a little when cold and on the highway, it should last a long time. We wouldn’t be afraid of a version with a particle filter either, because Renault used an external fifth exhaust injector to regenerate the DPF, so the engine doesn’t dilute the oil with diesel on shorter journeys. Competing engines suffer quite a bit from this if they are not regularly driven on long distances.

The Mégane also doesn’t rust (unless it’s been broken down a lot and sloppily repaired) and surprisingly, it doesn’t even have the same problems with electronics as before. But want the simplest version possible and ideally a car that has a complete service history. Questionable imports without a service center and a traceable history can be a twisted trap with no further perspective of a trouble-free old age. Maintained parts, on the other hand, have no problem running 400,000 km with just a regular service.

2023-05-26 03:04:23

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